Monday, February 29, 2016

Nebraska County Jail Starts Veterans Unit

Douglas County jail in Omaha opens new military vet unit
The Columbus Telegram
Updated Feb 27, 2016
Justine Wall, the department's in-house program coordinator, said he's never seen a prison unit operate the way the veterans unit does, "where everybody looks out for each other, everybody takes care of each other."
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — The Douglas County jail in Omaha has a new prisoner unit to house military veterans, the first of its kind in Nebraska and one of several in jails nationwide.

The Douglas County Department of Corrections unit, which houses 25 to 30 men, opened about three months ago, The Omaha World-Herald reported (http://bit.ly/1KSG8d0 ) Saturday.

The special unit is based on the idea that many crimes committed by veterans are related to things that happened to them in the military.

"People who went down-range, they saw things, they have PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder), they are back, they self-medicate, and they get in trouble," said Mick Wagoner, a lawyer with the Veterans Support Legal Network.

The unit is open to all male military veterans except for the most dangerous, predatory or disruptive people. People facing murder charges aren't eligible, nor are those with chronic behavior problems in jail.
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